The mission of The Department of Afro-American Research Arts and Culture to identify the global significance of the creative contributions pioneered by an international diaspora of Blackness
The Department of Afro American Research, Arts, and Culture's Archive is a subdivision of DAARAC that digitally preserves Afro American films. On this website, you may browse our archive that consists of film posters, screenshots, and movie synopsis. All information provided here is for research and reference purposes. We do not host full-length films on this website.

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Sunday, October 5, 2008

Fred Karlin - Leadbelly OST (1976)

Arranged and Conducted By FRED KARLIN, abc Records ABDP-939
Hi Tide Harris (Leadbelly vocals)
Art Evans (Blind Lemon vocals)
Dick Rosmini (12-string guitar)
David Cohen (6-string guitar) - Go Down, Ol' Hannah
Brownie McGhee (Guitar)
Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee ( Harmonica, Jew's-Harp)

1 Fannin' Street
2 Good Mornin' Blues
3 See That My Grave Is Kept Clean
4 The Midnight Special
5 Cotton Fields
6 The Challenge
7 Silver City Bound
8 Rock Island Line
9 Goodnight Irene
10 Black Girl
11 Green Corn
12 Bring Me a Li'l' Water, Silvy
13 Old Riley (In Dem Long Hot Summer Days)

Funkback's comment:
If anyone has a source for a proper review please feel free to contribute! All I can say is that it's rockin' good music and some beatuiful folk songs in here. I mean a musical duel between Leadbelly and Blind Lemon Jeffersson on a train? Does it get any funkier than that? It's a moody score provided by Karlin to set the background for Leadbetters descent into whiteman's hell. The movie doesn't cover his entire career so to aprecciate that I suggest You go elsewhere. There are no original Leadbelly recordings in this OST.

Provided by Cinnemageddon user Journeyman68


Unknown said...

This is a high quality film, not standard low-budget blaxploitation fare. Gordon Parks directs (apparently trying something a bit different from his Shaft notoriety) and there are some stand-out performances in this rare gem of a film. Roger E. Mosley is quite believable as Huddie Leadbetter and comes across with great pathos. There is even an appearance of a very young Ernie Hudson (billed as Ernest Hudson)and this film holds the honor of being his first feature work. All this is notwithstanding of the music which rightfully drives the film. The soundtrack is powerful and the performers working to reproduce the works of Leadbelly do an outstanding job. Furthermore the scoring is spot on perfect and sets the mood of each scene wonderfully. The historical accuracy of the film is not too far off the mark. Certain scenes are invented out of fantasy (such as how he gets the nickname Leadbelly and obviously the scenes where he is talking with his father) but it hits the high points and low points of his life right on the money to deliver a very watchable film. This is a work anyone would enjoy, but fans of Leadbelly will love it all the more. We can only hope that someday Paramount decides to re-release the film in High-Def and give it a the treatment it so richly deserves.

Unknown said...

I saw this movie at the theater when it first came out. It was so good and the music so well done, I skipped work the next day and paid to see it again. I never do that, but that's how good the film was.
Much to my surprise, Paramount pulled the movie from movie houses two weeks following it's release date. It was never shown again, not even of Television, and it isn't possible to rent it from blockbusters of Flix either.
I've been trying to find a bit torrent to download it, but have not yet found one. If anyone has a good copy of the film please stick on a cloud like;, so that others can d/l and enjoy.

Anonymous said...

There is currently a campaign to fund a new documentary on Lead Belly's life. Go to to show some support for a much needed film!